Accessing GP services: evaluating phone, videos and face-to-face appointments in Haringey

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Summary of report content

Healthwatch Haringey wanted to learn more about patients access to GP services through phone, video and face-to-face appointments. They used a range of methods to collect this feedback. They interviewed PPG members, GPs and Practice Managers, reviewed feedback from the Haringey Over 50s Forum as well as reviewing Haringey's most vulnerable service users report and the GP surgery mystery shopping report. 

Healthwatch Haringey found that the changes have been positive for some patients and practice staff as some patients found telephone consultations convenient and efficient and practice staff found telephone consultations easier to manage. However, there has been a negative impact on some patients in the move away from face-to-face consultations. Most patients expressed a concern about this, either for themselves or for other patients who experience language barriers, mental health issues, multiple illnesses or some disabilities. Healthwatch Haringey also found that for those patients who do not have access to a device and/or access to the internet at home, and who are therefore digitally excluded, accessing primary care services and GPs has proved especially challenging. 

Healthwatch Haringey recommended that telephone queuing systems should indicate position in the queue and recepetion staff not being required to take detailed information about symptoms before booking appointments. Recommendations on face-to-face consultations and eConsult were also made.


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General details

Report title 
Accessing GP services: evaluating phone, videos and face-to-face appointments in Haringey
Local Healthwatch 
Healthwatch Haringey
Date of publication 
Monday, 28 June, 2021
Date evidence capture began 
Monday, 28 June, 2021
Date evidence capture finished 
Monday, 28 June, 2021
Key themes 
Communication between staff and patients
Quality of care
Waiting times and lists for treatment

Methodology and approach

Was the work undertaken at the request of another organisation? 
What type of organisation requested the work 
Primary research method used 
Unstructured Interview
User stories
If an Enter and View methodology was applied, was the visit announced or unannounced? 

Details of health and care services included in the report

Primary care services 
GP practice

Details of people who shared their views

Does the information include public's views? 
Does the information include carer's, friend's or relative's views? 
Does the information include staff's views? 
Types of health and care professionals engaged 
Service manager
What was the main sentiment of the people who shared their views? 

Outcomes and impact

Were recommendations made by local Healthwatch in the report? 
Does the information contain a response from a provider? 
Is there evidence of impact in the report? 
Is there evidence of impact external to the report? 

Network Impact
Relationships that exist locally, regionally, nationally have benefited from the work undertaken in the report
Implied Impact
Where it is implied that change may occur in the future as a result of Healthwatch work. This can be implied in a provider  response, press release or other source. Implied impact can become tangible impact once change has occurred.
Tangible Impact
There is evidence of change that can be directly attributed to Healthwatch work undertaken in the report.